Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram By Duro IkhazuagbeÂ with agency reportFormer Argentina star, Jorge Burruchaga, has revealed that the South American nation is aiming to win her third World Cup in Russia next year.The former winger who scored Albicelesteâ€™s winning goal in the 3-2 defeat of then West Germany at Mexico â€™86, told Super Eagles Technical Adviser, Gernot Rohr, Argentina was gunning for the silverware again 31 years after. In a chat withÂ Scorenigeria.comÂ yesterday,Â the Franco-German Nigerian gaffer revealed his discussions with Burruchaga at the last World Cup 2018 Draw ceremony in Moscow early this month.â€œI met Jorge Burruchaga at the (World Cup) draw.Â He told me â€˜we are coming to win the World Cup,â€™ revealed the Eagles coach who is also aiming to make history with the three-time African champions.To show how serious the Argentines are about their ambition to win the cup in Russia, Rohr also hinted that the teamâ€™s handler Jorge Sampaoli and his crew have already secured a training base.â€œThey have chosen a magnificent base camp and will put everything in to make it (winning the cup) happen,â€ Rohr stressed.To Nigerian football fans still celebrating the 4-2 defeat of the Albiceleste in an international friendly in Krasnodar, Russia, Rohr stressed that Argentina is not the same team without Messi.Â â€œWe will not make the mistake of thinking that we already know them (Argentina).â€œWe beat them in friendly Krasnodar last month, but Argentina played without Lionel Messi.Â And Argentina without Messi, itâ€™s not the same team.â€œThey let in four goals, they may not have changed much defensively, but offensively they can change everything.â€œArgentina are still vice-champions of the world, and had not passed away from the coronation in 2014,â€ concludes the coach.Like in the previous three World Cups, the two teams will clash again in the last Group D match after the matches against Croatia and Iceland.Incidentally, Messi has featured five times in matches against Nigeria, but has only scored in two of such games.The first was at the 2005 Under-20 FIFA World Cup in Holland when his two penalty- kick goals sealed a 2-1 victory against Nigeria in the final.At the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Messi scored twice in the 3-2 win over a turbo-charged Super Eagles in Porto Alegre.He fired blanks in other games against Eagles. The first was the final match of the 2008 Olympics Games in Beijing. He also followed up the no-show against Nigeria at the 2010 World Cup group game in South Africa and the friendly match in Dhaka, Bangladesh in 2011.
MATTHEW KUTZ/Herald photoGreg Stiemsma will have a high school reunion of sorts tonight when the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team (5-1) takes the court against instate rival UW-Green Bay (2-4).The sophomore big man will get to play against his prep running mate Ryan Tillema, now a freshman forward for the Phoenix, who along with Stiemsma won three straight Division IV state titles at Randolph High School. Tillema added a fourth crown last season without Steimsma.”I probably know him better than anybody,” Stiemsma said. “It’s pretty weird to see a guy on the other team that I have been playing with since we were in fifth grade.”Such familiarity and renewals of rivalries are characteristic of this time of year, when Wisconsin goes on its quest to claim the unofficial state championship of basketball, as UW will play all three of the Dairy State’s other Division I programs — UW-Green Bay, UW-Milwaukee and Marquette. The Badgers play Marquette on Saturday before finishing up the Wisconsin series Dec. 15 against UW-Milwaukee.”It’s always good to play the schools in the state. You know everybody across the state gets to see everybody. I guess you can sort of see it as a state championship. It is going to be very competitive and each team wants to win to show they are the best team in Wisconsin,” junior guard Kammron Taylor said, adding that pundits can throw out the records with these in-state rivalries. “Even though [some Wisconsin teams’] record might say another thing, but once they come in here they are going to be ready to play.”Such is the case tonight, as the Phoenix will walk into the Kohl Center with a 2-4 record, trying to rebound from a 59-51 loss to Illinois State last Saturday. UW-GB has played Wisconsin tough in the past, however, and has hardly rolled over for Bo Ryan’s squad. One need look no further than last year’s closer-than-expected game, when the Badgers defeated the Phoenix 65-55 in Madison.”That was actually one of my worst games last year, and I just try to put that out of my head,” Taylor said.”[Green Bay has] some very good players. The future is bright with the group of guys they have coming through that program,” assistant coach Greg Gard said.UW-GB’s youth will be on display, as the team has no seniors and only three juniors this season. Their best player, however, could very well be Stiemsma’s former teammate Tillema, who is averaging 10.7 points per game and is shooting 50 percent (16-for-32) from beyond the three-point line.”He’s got a nice touch around the perimeter and he definitely can score,” Stiemsma said.Alongside Tillema will be junior guard Ryan Evanochko, who leads the team in both points (11.5 per game) and assists (3.83).If the Phoenix are to upset Wisconsin, however, they will need to up their offensive production, as they have thus far only averaged 58.7 points a contest, while the Badgers have averaged 85.0. Strangely, UW-Green Bay’s three-point shooting percentage (.423) is better then their overall shooting percentage (.372), meaning that getting out on the Phoenix perimeter shooters will be of premium importance.”They have some guys that you just can’t leave open,” Gard said. “If you give those guys those open looks, they have some guys that can really knock them down and hurt you.”Although the Badgers should enjoy a significant talent advantage, don’t be surprised to see another hotly contested matchup.”All those teams from the state have something to prove. They just want to prove that they can play at the top level,” junior Alando Tucker said. “Green Bay is a good team. They always play us physical and hard, and they want to prove they belong.”For Stiemsma and Tillema, like many of the other players during the in-state series, something even bigger is on the line: bragging rights.”There might be a little bit under the table, but nothing too big,” Stiemsma joked. “The loser will have to hear about it at least until next year.”